Special Report: European refiners challenged during declining gasoline, diesel markets

The past year has been a challenging one for the European refining industry, particularly because of the drastic fluctuations of world oil prices. After peaking at nearly $150/bbl in July 2008, oil prices have fallen to a current level of $60-70/bbl. Refiners had very good margins where capacity and balances for gasoline and diesel were rather tight at particular points last year. Now falling margins for fuel producers, high operating costs, falling demand, and a supply glut in new capacity are major problems. A string of upgrades and conversion projects have been postponed or canceled in light of the global recession and the tightening of credit availability (Fig. 1). Click here to enla...

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